On July 8, 2014, CEO Jeff Bewkes of Time Warner rejected Fox CEO, Rupert Murdoch’s $80 billion and $85/per share bid to acquire Time Warner Inc. Merging the two media goliaths would serve as the biggest media deal in more than a decade.
Fox, with its impressive resume of networks including Fox News and National Geographic Channels is as recognizable a media mainstay as Time Warner with its highly lucrative cable channels HBO, TNT and TBS. That said, $80 billion doesn’t come close to a figure favorable enough to see Bewkes negotiate a deal.
The take over attempt comes at a time when other media proprietors in the content distributor sector are expanding through their own acquisitions and moguls like Murdoch see an emerging opportunity for content providers.
One of the greatest advantages for Fox in acquiring Time Warner would be in controlling the more highly valued sports programs Time Warner has rights to; most notably are the men’s NCAA basketball tournaments and MLB baseball games. This would add to Fox’s repertoire of sporting events they telecast—which includes the NFL regular season and playoff games, baseball’s World Series and college football.
In effect, Time Warner’s move to monopolize such a large part of the content provider realm has caused quite the buzz in comments over social media, as this is likely only the beginning of future bids in Fox’s attempt to establish themselves as the media giant of giants. Many over social media feel the acquisition would only prove beneficial for media conglomerates and a costly setback for consumers who desire diversification in a Free Press society.